Some dogs can eat just about anything without getting sick, including things we wish they wouldn’t gobble up. But other dogs have highly sensitive stomachs and are prone to digestive problems, even when they’re eating what seems like nutritious foods.If your pup falls into the latter category, it can be stressful to see them in discomfort and not get all the nutrients they need.
Symptoms of Sensitive Stomach in Dogs
Good digestive health is essential for our dogs to live happy, healthy lives! On average, it takes them between 6 and 8 hours to fully digest their food. During the majority of that time (4-6 hours) your dog’s food is in their stomach. Therefore, it only makes sense that we’d want our pups to have strong, healthy stomachs.But just like humans, the digestive patterns of each dog can be unique. Knowing what’s normal for your individual dog is a good way to determine whether your pup has digestive problems. So how can you tell if your dog has the occasional upset tummy or an overall sensitive stomach? Notice the following symptoms of a sensitive stomach:
Intermittent loose stools
Random, occasional vomiting
Audible tummy sounds
Loss of appetite
Excessive lip-licking, or air licking
Pacing after eating
If your dog experiences these symptoms frequently, then it\'s a good indicator they have a sensitive stomach and will need additional care to soothe their tummy.
What Causes Sensitive Stomachs in Dogs?
Our dogs’ digestive systems play a massive role in ensuring all the key nutrients are absorbed from their food. So it\'s essential to take note when something is off with your pup’s gut.Your veterinarian can help you get to the root cause of your dog’s sensitive stomach. They may use blood tests to help identify the cause of your dog’s GI distress.Sensitive stomachs are commonly caused by:
Infections from parasites or bacteria
*Interestingly, food sensitivity symptoms can also show up in your dog\'s skin as rashes, redness, and even fur loss.
Why Gut Health Is So Important For Dogs
The stomach is only one stop along the journey through your dog’s digestive tract. So if your pup has a sensitive stomach, it could prevent them from getting all the nutrients they need from their food. Good nutrition supports healthy growth, active living, and a strong immune system. And addressing signs of a sensitive stomach early on can be effective at preventing more serious digestive problems such as these:
Colitis - Inflammation of the large intestine (colon)
Dysbiosis (leaky gut) - Weakening of the intestinal barrier that filters nutrients to the bloodstream
The Best Natural Remedies for Dogs with Sensitive Stomachs
A proper diet goes a long way in supporting dogs with sensitive stomachs. Pawsomely Healthy’s friend, and Canine Nutritionist, Hannah Zulueta is a strong advocate for addressing our dogs\' digestive needs through healthy, natural foods. In fact, check out her guest post here, where she explains how nutrition can affect dogs with allergies. In regards to nutrition, your veterinarian can also recommend easy-to-digest food that will help soothe your dog’s tummy. There are also a host of natural remedies that support dogs with sensitive stomachs:
Many of us have used ginger root to treat our own digestive problems. As it turns out the same properties that are good for us are good for our dogs too!The anti-inflammatory properties of ginger can help soothe your pup’s nausea. It can also help prevent and expel excess gas from your dog’s digestive tract. It also helps prevent gas and bloat by stimulating stomach movement and accelerating stomach emptying.
Chamomile is one of the most ancient medicinal herbs. It is a member of the Asteraceae family. The dried flowers of chamomile contain high levels of terpenoids and flavonoids, both are potent antioxidants, crucial for defending cells from damage caused by free radicals. One of the safest and most versatile herbal pet remedies around, chamomile has a broad range of scientifically proven uses. It is known to calm the gastrointestinal tract alleviating symptoms of indigestion, vomiting, gas, and bloating.
The Final Woof
Digestive problems really lower the quality of your dog’s life. So if your pup has a sensitive stomach, visit your veterinarian for their expert advice, be sure to feed them easier-to-digest foods, and supplement their diet with natural ingredients to support their digestive health!